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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 05-05-26

The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <>


  • [01] Weather Change
  • [02] Over Greek Tourism
  • [03] Dog-Food Diet
  • [04] 'No' Vote Gains More Ground
  • [05] A Day of Developments
  • [06] Sudden Cloudburst in Thessaloniki
  • [07] Abbas Crosses White House Threshold
  • [08] Moscow Sees the Light
  • [09] US Diplomatic Missions Close Down
  • [10] Al-Zarqawi Has Been Replaced
  • [11] Suicide Attack in Baghdad
  • [12] Liverpool European Champion
  • [13] Scenarios for 7.5 Quake
  • [14] Hostage.doc
  • [15] From Making Coffees to Book-Making
  • [16] Sperm Donours Taxed

  • [01] Serious Problems in Crete and Thessaloniki Weather Change

    26 May 2005 11:43:00

    By Anna Kourti

    Sleet has caused extensive damages to crops and fields in Herakleion, Crete, and especially in the municipalities of Nikos Kazantzakis and Asterousia. Serious problems have also been reported in the city of Herakleion and in Thessaloniki, where dozens of basements, houses and shops flooded. In Efkarpia, people almost lost their lives when their car was washed away by the rushing waters of a torrent. The weather in Athens is fickle as well, with torrential rainfalls that caused extensive problems to traffic flow at the heart of the capital. The weather for today will be rainy with sporadic storms in the mainland and northern gales over central and northern Aegean.

    The Weather

    Attica will experience cloud cover with rainfalls and possibly localized storms. Weak winds will be blowing in from the north northeast and medium from the east. Temperature will not exceed 25oC.

    In Thessaloniki the weather will be fickle, locally cloudy with temporary rainfalls and localized storms mainly in the afternoon. Weak winds will be blowing in from the north and temperature will not exceed 26oC.


    Cloud cover is expected for Frida with localized rainfalls and sporadic storms, mainly at noon and afternoon. Winds will be blowing in from the west southwest weak to medium. In the rest of the country, winds will be weak to medium and strong to very strong over the Aegean. Temperature will remain at the same levels.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [02] Museums Will Stay Open from 8am to 7:30pm Over Greek Tourism

    26 May 2005 11:36:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    The Greek PM, who visited the Ministry of Tourism this morning in the context of his cycle of contacts with Ministries, voiced his satisfaction over the progress of Greek tourism. Kostas Karamanlis declared that Greece is being considered a tourist destination in the new global markets, while he noted the competitive and diverse nature of tourism, which respect towards culture and tradition. The PM also referred to the countrys promotion, stressing that this was the first time that an overseas advertising campaign was launched this early, while he also mentioned the national campaign, noting it was decided that as of 1 June, large museums and archaeological sights are to stay open from 8am to 7:30pm throughout the week. Mr Karamanlis also referred to the governments institutional policies in the area of Tourism. At the moment, Mr Karamanlis is meeting with the Minister of Transport and Communications, Michalis Liapis, while he is scheduled to meet with NDs secretary Vangelis Meimarakis in an hour.

    The Aims

    "We aim at an essential and long-term upgrade in the area of Tourism. Our efforts reflect the particular importance we are placing on tourism, as a lever of economic growth. The large chapter of the Olympic preparations forms the foundations on which we will build our future plans," noted the PM after his meeting with Tourism Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos, which lasted over two hours. "Our efforts are already bearing fruit. We achieved the stabilisation of tourist activity and we are expecting it will increase in the coming years."

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [03] Dog Was Losing Weight, Boy was Gaining Dog-Food Diet

    26 May 2005 12:00:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    The family dog was literally starving to death, since a 10-year-old boy from Italy decided to follow a very original diet. The boys parents were alarmed as their child reached a whopping 80 kg and enlisted the help of an expert. The dietitian gave the boy a balanced diet, but he kept putting on weight, without devouring any sweets of fatty snacks. At the same time, the family dog had become all skin and bone, despite the fact that his owners kept filling his plate with food. Why, you might ask. Because the boy was stealing the dogs food to satisfy his hunger. The mystery was eventually solved when the dog reacted and bit the boy as he was trying to take its food. So the dog was fed and the boy was scolded.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [04] 72 Hours Before the French Referendum 'No' Vote Gains More Ground

    26 May 2005 10:40:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    As per an opinion poll conducted on behalf of newspaper Le Monde and TV stations RTL and LCI, the percentage of the No votes increased by one unit, reaching 54%, just 72 hours before Sundays crucial referendum in France for the European Constitution. This is the 11th consecutive poll predicting that the Euroconstitution would be voted against during the referendum on Sunday. The number of undecided voters decreased to 20%, as opposed to 25% during the last opinion poll. As a matter of fact, 82% of those asked declared that they are sure of their choice, while 17% believe that they might change their opinion. Furthermore, 47% believe that the No vote will win, as opposed to 41% who are predicting victory for Yes. The majority of left-wing voters (66%) support the No vote, while a 5-percentile-unit increase was recorded among the Socialists, 59% of whom will be voting against the European Constitution.

    Right Wing 'Yes', Left Wing 'No'

    The Yes vote seems to be dominating among the voters of the Right wing, since it increased from 61 to 67%. In addition, 80% of the voters of the centre-right party UDF and 75% of the supporters of Jacques Chiracs UMP are in favour of Yes. On the other hand, 90% of the extremist Right members will be voting No.

    In answering whether a No vote would affect Frances influence in Europe, 45% believed that it would become weaker, as opposed to 44% who believe that there would be no problems.

    Finally, 58% of those asked believe that a Yes victory would facilitate the operations of European institutions and would render Europe more powerful against the USA or China.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [05] Holy Synod Convenes in Jerusalem A Day of Developments

    26 May 2005 08:17:00 (Last updated: 26 May 2005 13:40:18)

    By Anna Kourti

    Sources: NET

    The Holy Synod started convening at 12 noon in Jerusalem to elect a Patriarchal suffragant. According to NET, two views prevail; one the one hand, a suffragnat may be elected today, while on the other hand, a date might be set for the election, since they are waiting the official publication of the Palestinian Authoritys decision. The members of the Holy Sepulchre delegation who participated in the Panorthodox Synod returned from Phanar late on Wednesday night. In the meantime, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew referred to Eirinaios as former Patriarch of Jerusalem described the situation as an abscess. On behalf of Greece, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Giorgos Koumoutsakos urged Eirinaios to resign. At the same time, diplomatic sources are not ruling out the possibility that the Greek state would be revoking Eirinaios diplomatic passport.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    Related News:

    Next Moves in Jerusalem

    [06] Traffic Jams Around the City Sudden Cloudburst in Thessaloniki

    25 May 2005 23:01:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    Sources: NET

    The sudden cloudburst in Thessaloniki on Wednesday afternoon caused traffic jams around the city. Because of the downpour, a stream in Nea Efkarpia flooded, causing problems in passers-by and cars on Karaiskaki street. At the same time, drivers at the heart of the city were also facing problems, as central roads had turned into torrents trapping their cars. Employees at the Municipality of Thessaloniki tried to clean flooded manholes, while the Fire Brigade received over 200 calls by citizens whose homes had flooded.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [07] Meeting with US President Bush Today Abbas Crosses White House Threshold

    26 May 2005 11:14:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    The President of the Palestinian Authority, Mahmud Abbas, declared that he would be seeking US President George Bushs help to fulfil his vision of a viable, sovereign Palestinian state living next to Israel in peace and security. Mr Abbas, who is scheduled to meet with the US President today in the White House, told reporters that the Palestinians are ready to make the necessary sacrifices so that their dream can come true. "We are committed to negotiations as the only means to achieve this vision of a two-state solution," stressed Abbas, who added, "What is needed from the United States is a clear political position on fulfilling this vision." On Wednesday, Abbas met with US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Vice President Dick Cheney and was reassured that the United States was committed to the implementation of the road map and would help advance peace moves.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [08] Many Areas Remain in the Dark Moscow Sees the Light

    26 May 2005 10:05:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    Life is starting to return to normal in Moscow, following the total power failure on Wednesday, which plunged the Russian capital and its surrounding areas in the dark. However, as per the local authorities, numerous houses, hospitals and schools in the southern part of the city do not have electric power yet. The metro, where approximately 20,000 people were trapped in yesterday, operates as normal, as is also the case with the suburban railway. On the other hand, according to the Russian Media, the trams and trolley buses as not running yet. The authorities announced that the power supply would be fully reinstated by 2pm (local time). An explosion in the Sagino power station, which had been built in 1950, triggered the power cut.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    Related News:

    Moscow Comes to a Halt

    Power Cut in Moscow

    [09] In Indonesia US Diplomatic Missions Close Down

    26 May 2005 07:36:00

    By Anna Kourti

    All US diplomatic missions in Indonesia, including the Embassy, Consulate General and all other US Government facilities, are closing down due to a security threat, as announced by the US Embassy in Jakarta. In a message posted on its website, which was also sent to US citizens living in Indonesia, the Embassy does not clarify the nature of this threat and does not provide details. Furthermore, an Embassy spokesperson, Max Quack, avoided providing specifics concerning the threat.

    Fears for Terrorist Attack

    "The Embassy reminds all Americans that the terrorist threat in Indonesia remains high," mentioned the Embassy message. Over the last few years, Islamists believed to be linked to al-Qaeda launched numerous bombing attacks against Western and other targets in Indonesia, including the one against the Australian Embassy in Jakarta last September, which claimed the lives of 10 people.

    The announcement coincides with the visit of Indonesias President, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, to the USA.

    Apart from the heavily guarded US Embassy in Jakarta, the American diplomatic mission also has Consulates in Surabaya, Eastern Java, and in Bali. Furthermore, there is also a US Government facility in Medan, Sumatra.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [10] He Has Allegedly Been Injured Al-Zarqawi Has Been Replaced

    26 May 2005 10:57:00

    By Athina Saloustrou

    The Iraqi faction of al Qaeda appointed al-Kurani as deputy to lead the group until Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, who has allegedly been wounded, could resume command. A statement posted on an Islamist website mentioned, "The leaders met after the wounding of our Sheikh Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, may God heal him, and decided to appoint a deputy to assume the leadership until the return of our Sheikh safely." It further noted that the leadership of the group decided to appoint Abu Hafs al-Kurani as deputy of the Mujahedeen, as he "was known for carrying out the hardest operations, and our Sheik would choose him and his group for the tough operations." The statements authenticity has not been verified yet, while there is no mention of al-Zarqawis condition.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    Related News:

    Zarqawi's Injury a Trick?

    [11] Three Dead-Six Injured Suicide Attack in Baghdad

    26 May 2005 09:08:00

    By Anna Kourti

    Three people were killed and another six were injured during a suicide attack in Baghdad on Thursday morning. As announced by the Iraqi Interior Ministry, the car bomb, driven by a suicide bomber, exploded at 7:30am (local time) near an Iraqi police patrol in the district Shola. As per the Iraqi official, earlier, a roadside bomb detonated as a private security convoy, escorted by Iraqi and US military vehicles, was moving through Baghdad. American soldiers sealed off the area, but there are no reports just yet on victims.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [12] Liverpool European Champion

    26 May 2005 00:44:00

    By Stathis Petropoulos

    Tonight, Milan and Liverpool demonstrated the greatness of the Champions League and of European football in Istanbul, in a final that nobody has ever seen before nor is likely to see in the near future! The final score of 3-3 in regular period came in a breathtaking way and as was expected the match would be decided in the penalty shoot-out, where the most calm would take the trophy home. As it was proved, Liverpool were better off, and after disqualifying Juventus in the previous match, they kept their cool together and defeated the Italians in the penalty kicks, even though the latter have a reputation of being far better in the penalty shoot-out. After, 21 years Liverpool claimed the highest distinction in football and Europe was painted red. Gerrard and his fellow players lifted Liverpool to the top and will have to do with the bitter feeling that in one year from now, this title will be passed on to another team and they will not be able to defend it!

    Like a Walk in the Park

    The first half was entirely a Milanese case! Captain Paolo Maldini opened the score for the Italian team, which was typically the home team today, just in the 50'' and thus predisposed fans for an amazing night in Milan, a feeling which was even more reinforced by Milan's play and Liverpool's passivity throughout the first half . After Shevchenko's pass in the 39', Crespo doubled Milan's goals, while in the 44' the same player found the English defence completely open and unprotected and increased the difference to 3-0. The score of the first half did not leave much room for counterattacks, but Liverpool had other ideas and completely turned the game around in the rerun!

    Total Recall

    In the second half, Benitez substituted Finnan with Hamann, while from the 23' already, Kewell had given his place to Smicer and thanks to those two moves, Liverpool was awakened as though by a miracle! 3-1 came in the 54', two minutes after Dudek amazingly saved Shevchenko's foul kick, when captain Gerrard signaled the counterattack with his successful header. Before giving time to Milan's defenders to pull themselves together, the score was 3-2 with Smicer's kick outside the box and in the 60', ie 25 minutes after the second half had started, Liverpool had tied the match and was rightfully going after victory in the most interesting and breathtaking final of the last years. Even if nothing else would happen from then onwards, the title wouldn't be lost. However, the remaining thirty minutes of the regular period included many lost attempts, mainly for Milan, and nothing else worth mentioning.

    Breathtaking Finale

    In the extra time, both teams' footballers were overcome by fatigue and it was more than obvious, since they were pretty close to dragging their feet. Choices in offence were bad and it seemed that neither Milan nor Liverpool could keep a cool head in attacks or counterattacks. So, the most important attempts of the extra time came in the 120'. At that minute, Milan and in particular Shevchenko lost a double opportunity to defeat Dudek and his one and only chance to become the hero of this final. In the next minute, Liverpool had their own ultimate chance to win, but Gerrard's foul kick couldn't be converted into a goal and thus the match was taken to the penalty shoot-out. And although the Italians brag about their calmness and cool, tonight they were proved wrong and lost by 2-3 missing out on the first two penalty kicks with Serginho and Pirlo and on the last penalty of the night with Shevchenko.


    Serginho Ball went wide 0-1 Hamann Pirlo Dudek Saved 0-2 Cisse Tomasson 1-2 Dida Saved Riise Kaka 2-2 2-3 Smicer Shevchenko Dudek Saved


    MILAN: Dida, Cafu, Stam, Nesta, Maldini, Gattuso (112' Rui Costa), Pirlo, Seedorf (85' Serginho), Kaka, Crespo (85' Tomasson), Shevchenko

    LIVERPOOL: Dudek, Finnan (46' Hamann), Carragher, Hyypia, Traore, Luis Garcia, Gerrard, Xabi Alonso, Riise, Kewell (23' Smicer), Baros (85' Cisse)

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [13] In the City of Angels Scenarios for 7.5 Quake

    26 May 2005 00:05:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    Sources: Reuters

    American geologists have sounded the alarm for a little-known fault, Puente Hills, which runs under Los Angeles County and adjacent to Riverside and San Bernardino counties. The fault in question has caused quakes of magnitude 7.2 to 7.5 at least four times in the past 11,000 years. As per the scientists, such an earthquake is very rare, however, building codes and emergency planning should take the risks into account. In any case, according to the US scientists, a quake of magnitude 7.2 to 7.5 would be the most destructive in American history, as it would kill anywhere between 3,000 and 18,000 people, would displace between 142,000 and 735,000 households, and would cause up to $250 billion in property damage.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [14] Hostage.doc

    25 May 2005 22:47:00

    By Tina Valaoura

    A new malicious program seems to be saying "Your money for your files", as it enhances the activities of hackers, paving the way for lucrative ventures. The difference between a run-of the-mill virus and a trojan is that the latter does not reproduce or send itself out to contacts, but as an electronic Trojan Horse it installs itself on a vulnerable computer after users visit certain websites. They appear as safe and useful programs and only reveal their true colours when installed. As soon as the trojan in question, named Trojan.Pgpcoder, installs itself in the hard drive, it locks any files it finds and then leaves a ransom note, asking the owner to pay money in order to unlock the files. The companies specialising in security matters have not given it a high degree of danger, however, they insist that prevention is the best cure.

    Attention!!! New Type of Electronic Extortion

    Websence was the first company to the sound the alarm concerning Trojan.Pgpcoder. It is a quiet and effective achiever, which exploits a known vulnerability in Microsofts Internet Explorer. Once it installs itself unbeknown to a user, it triggers the download of an encoder application that searches for common types of files on a computer and networked drives to encrypt. The trojan replaces a users original files with locked up ones, so that they are inaccessible. It then leaves a note in a text file, entitled "Attention!!!", warning the users that they needs to pay up in order to receive the key. The electronic note also gives details on how to meet the demands via an online account.

    Symantec, however, reassured the public, saying that the chances of this trojan spreading are very slim, but warned that it was another example of rising criminal extortion activity on the net. "It is the equivalent of someone coming into your home, locking your valuables in a safe and refusing to give you the combination," was mentioned in the companys announcement.

    The tips against this new threat are the same as always:

    Install anti-virus programs in your PCs and keep updating them frequently Update your Windows with the various Microsoft updates Do not open e-mails that look suspicious and do not download attachments from unknown senders.

    Translated by Vicky Ghionis

    [15] From Making Coffees to Book-Making

    26 May 2005 12:02:00

    By Ilias Papaioannou

    A 37-year-old in Flamouria, Edessa, turned his fellow citizens' gambling passion into a profession. As per Police charges, the man had turned his wife's coffee-shop into an illegal book-making place. In fact, for the needs of his business, he had even set an electronic system through which illegal bets were placed on the Internet.

    Handed Out Receipts As Well

    Taking into consideration that many of his customers didnt know how to surf the net, the 37-year-old bookie made sure to offer them along with their cup of coffee a print-out of the football matches schedule with a predetermined yield. While arresting the man, local authorities also confiscated the electronic system used for the illegal bets, 285 euros as a product of the illegal transaction, as well as the receipts the players received for their participation.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

    [16] Sperm Donours Taxed

    25 May 2005 22:21:00

    By Annita Paschalinou

    Sources: Reuters

    The source of the worlds biggest sperm bank may soon run dry if Danish authorities decide to tax donours, Cryos International Sperm Bank said on Wednesday. Denmark, with the worlds highest income tax levels, wants sperm donors to pay tax on the 500 crown ($84.59) reimbursement men receive for their services. "It is a special kind of work and therefore the fee cannot be compared to normal working income," Cryos said in a letter to the tax authorities, adding it risked losing donors, most of whom are students. Cryos receives between 30-60 donors a day at its three branches and each year Danish men contribute to around 1,000 pregnancies around the world.

    Translated by Sofia Soulioti

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